As you probably know by now schools will not be reopening on the 10th of January 2022 as was planned. This is despite the fact that there is a memo out there that says schools will reopen next week. As often happens in Zimbabwe as soon as that memo was issued the authorities issued another order that basically overrode the contents of that memo. To reiterate, schools will not be reopening on the 10th. It’s not yet clear when they will reopen as the government has postponed the reopening indefinitely.

Another point to note is that while the 2022 calendar has been delayed schools are actually open. Those writing their 2021 end of year examinations didn’t finish last year as their timetable overflows into this year. While in most schools the examinations seem to be going well in a handful of schools the government is embroiled in yet another fight with teachers over their compensation.

It seems a number of teachers are again saying they are incapacitated and need their incomes to be reviewed.

We all know that the government knows that the peanuts paid to us on the 17th of December as bonuses have been long eroded, and it is hoped that if the opening date is announced after the January payday, teachers will then get bus fares to their work stations.

What some of the angry teachers had to say

The government meanwhile has said those who are no longer reporting for work will not get paid.

It doesn’t matter when schools will open, even if schools open tomorrow or at a later date, we expect all teachers to go back to work and report for duty.

As government, we will maintain the stance that if you don’t come to work, you don’t get paid.

The National Joint Negotiating Council (NJNC) is dealing with the issue of conditions of services for all civil servants.

The process of talking to each other must be respected. We do not want a situation whereby one or two teachers’ unions wants to disrupt the system. We will not allow that to happen.

Honestly, these fights are nothing new. They will carry on like this. Hopefully, things will get resolved before schools reopen in earnest.

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